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The Lead With Jake Tapper

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U.s. 22, Clinton 20, Iraq 16, Isis 15, Baghdad 13, Washington 11, Us 11, Cnn 9, Christiane Amanpour 6, Libya 5, America 5, United States 5, Nebraska 5, D.c. 5, Jake Tapper 4, Jake 3, Anderson Cooper 3, Pilger 3, Newseum 3, Epa 2,
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  CNN    The Lead With Jake Tapper    Headlines from around the globe span  
   politics, finance, sports and popular culture.  

    June 17, 2014
    1:00 - 2:01pm PDT  

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>> the channel carrying the rally had to apologize for the "f" bomb being dropped. the team's president warned the players not to curse. apparently the mayor didn't get the memo. i'm brooke baldwin. see you back here same time same place tomorrow. let's go to a especially lead. live from the neuseum in washington, jake tapper starts washington, jake tapper starts now -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com great news about the capture of the suspected instigator of the benghazi attacks. why did it take so long to do that when cnn found him more than a year ago? i'm jake tapper. this is "the lead." he is a key suspect in the attacks on u.s. diplomatic posts one year and nine months later, he is finally in u.s. government hands and going to be tried on u.s. soil. is that the right call? also in world news, militants on the march. a city fewer than 40 miles from baghdad could be the next to
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fall. how soon could the terrorists with isis be in the capital of iraq, and what's to some them from killing everybody once they arrive? and the politics lead. benghazi, iraq and who knows what else could come up during the town hall that will hillary clinton will be holding live here on cnn in just minutes. we're inviting you to ask the questions. good afternoon, everyone. we're live from the shrine to all things journalism. the newseum here in washington, d.c. we're just an hour from now, form ter senator, former secretary of state and possibly future presidential candidate hillary clinton will hold a live town hall moderated by our own christiane amanpour. you can only see it on cnn. i'm jake tapper. good afternoon. so much happening today. we're covering it all this hour. two major stories in our world lead. in iraq islamist militants are leaving a trail of blood on
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their way to baghdad. in libya, u.s. forces finally captured a key suspect in the 2012 attacks on u.s. diplomatic posts in benghazi, libya, an incident that ha has dogged clinton to led the state department at the time. the suspect ahmed abu khattala described by president obama as one of the spts master minds" of the benghazi attack. u.s. special forces working with the fbi finally caught him in libya on sunday. officials tell cnn he is being held outside libya right now but he will not stay there. a spokesperson for the national security council says he will be move the to the u.s.s in "the coming days." eric holder has vowed to try him here in the u.s. in american courts, a decision already generating controversy. u.s. officials say he's being interrogated before the attack. the attacks on the consulate in benghazi killed four americans, ambassador chris stephens,
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information management.officer sean smith and former navy seals glen do you herty and tyronn woods. president obama today hailed the catch tour and said it should serve as a message for the rest of the world. >> when americans are attacked, no matter how long it takes, we will find those responsible and we will bring them to justice. >>. this case, it took more than 21 months after the attack. in may of 2013, more than a year ago, our own arwa damon was able to be track down khattala in plain sight. he was kicking up his heels at a coffee shop in benghazi. here's some of their exchange. [ speaking foreign language ]
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let's talk about this long an equated capture for the benghazi attacks with jen saki, spokeswoman for the state department. good to see you as always. i don't expect that you understood that. we were chironing it. but the short story is that our own arwa damon found abu khattala in a coffee shop. he said he had not been contacted by any american investigators. earlier today, you called this irrelevant. but i'm not trying to be flip here. why did it take long to get him if journalists were able to find him more than a year ago? >> jake, the factors that the president of the united states and the national security team look at when they're about to undertake operations like this one are is it ready to go and prepared to succeed. and what we're looking at here is this individual has now been detained and it was a successful
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operation. we know there's ample precedent for journalists interviewing terrorists or other individuals. but there are a range of factors the united states government has to look at before taking action. >> can you give us an idea of what those are? did you have to get the permission of the government of libya? did -- i mean, what kind of factors are you talking about? >> the libyan government obviously has been well aware of our desire and tracking down and holding those who are responsible for the terrible attacks on september 11th accountable. that's what we have done in this case. but this was a u.s.-run operation. unilateral operation run by the united states, but again, we wanted to make sure this would have a successful outcome to the degree possible. we did and we have. >> jen, we're told that khattala will be moved to the u.s. in the coming days, presumably when he arrives here, he'll be read his miranda rights and told he has the right to remain silent, the right to the an attorney. i assume that we are getting as
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much intelligence, the u.s. government is getting as much intelligence from him before that have transfer is made. why then transfer him in the coming days? why not get as much as the u.s. government can over the next few weeks or months? >> without getting into details, we make every effort to the obtain as enough interrogation as we can in these cases. this operation is raun by the department of justice and they are taking every step necessary to ensure he's brought to justice. >> right. their priority right now is prosecuting him. obviously there's an intelligence prerogative, as well to find out as much as can be found. i'm saying why not delay the justice department part of this until that -- until as much intelligence has been xwleened as possible? we were told by the national security council earlier today that the transfer is going to take place in the coming days. that might seem rather quick in terms of intelligence gathering.
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>> well, we weigh a range of factors including being able to obtain actionable intelligence as all of these decisions are made. but you know, our effort here and our focus here is also holding him accountable for his involvement in the terrible attacks from september 11th. >> i want to turn to iraq in the few minutes we have left. mosul fell more than a week ago or a week ago today, i believe, tikrit fell last wednesday. baqubah is in danger of falling today. just moments ago in brazil, vice president joe biden said "urgent assistance is clearly required for iraq." what more information does president obama need before a decision is made? >> well, jake, obviously, the president doesn't make decisions lightly. we've been increasing our assistance. he's considering a range of options. no decision has been made. but what we're looking at is the need for a comprehensive approach. what it involves first and
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foremost, the iraqi government, not the united states, not any country can make this situation better for them. we'll weigh a range you have factors and give the president room to make his decision. >> secretary of state kerry, your boss, it was an open secret that he wanted more aggressive, more air strikes i guess is the correct term against isis -- i'm sorry, against the syrian government in last year's debate. but would that not have potentially helped isis which is now gaining ground? isn't this also confusing that any air strike might have huge blowback potential in a way we can't even predict? >> as the president and national security team consider options on the able, they consider all the factors. there's no question here that the overflow of violence from syria is a huge contributing factor if not the factor to what we're seeing in iraq now. we've increased what the assistance we're giving and what
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we're doing for the opposition in syria and obviously, we've increased what we're doing in iraq, as well. but we weigh all of the factors here. one of the reasons we're focused on a comprehensive approach is because we feel the political component here, the need for more inclusivity and turn back from sectarian way of goompbing is how we'll see a long-term kes successes in iraq. >> jen psaki, thank you so much. when we come back, another bludy assault under way on a major iraqi city as terrorists close in on baghdad. their own anderson cooper is inside the capital. we'll go live to anderson next. plus the reason i'm here today, cnn's exclusive town hall with hillary clinton where she will answer your questions. we're minutes away from the start of that event. stay with us. nobody ever stomped their foot and asked for less. because what we all really want... ...is more. there's a reason it's called an "all you can eat" buffet. and not a "have just a little buffet".
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in world news, getting closer to the door steps of baghdad. militants with a terrorist group the islam yim state in the iraq and sir yas known as isis are now fighting for the control of the city of baqubah. less than 40 miles from baghdad. you know how close fort worth is to dallas? that's how close they are to the capital of iraq. anderson cooper joins us live from baghdad. security has been beefed up around the u.s. embassy there. is there a sense of fear over these approaching militants? >> there's certainly a lot of concern and uncertainty. i was driving around the city earlier today. there's security everywhere in the city. as you know, you've been here plenty of times. there's security here always. but i've never seen it like this. every block or so, there are military and police on streets.
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there are checkpoints pulling over vehicles asking young men to get out of vehicles checking papers. we had our papers checked multiple times driving several blocks in the city. so there's a real sense of concern about what is happening. as you said, less than 40 miles from the gates of baghdad. >> anderson, iraqi security forces outnumber isis fighters 100 to one. how is isis beneath them? >> yeah. that is -- that's the million dollar question. i talked to dexter full kins on your show the other day. he said he believed it was a question of morale among iraqi forces. there's a real question of leadership. today on iraqi television, nuri al maliki said he's fired four top military commanders because they deserted their post. there's a lot of concern about quality of some of the leadership in the iraqi military, how they got their positions and their abilities on the battlefield. when that filters down and troops don't have confidence in
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leadership, they don't have confidence on the battlefield. a lot of these isis fighters are hardened fighting for years now in syria. they're trained and they've come back here. and also in a lot of areas it's sunni dominated areas in mosul and elsewhere. it's not just isis fighters. there are other sunni groups involved here and they're able to use the local population and have the support of the local population in ways that the shia government fighters don't. >> and anderson, tell us about the violence in baghdad today. was this at all related to this crisis with isis? >> yeah, six bombs went off in baghdad today. five of them were roadside bombs. one a car bomb in sadr city. obviously a huge concern. that's one of the stunning things, jake, with all the security layers here in the city and all these checkpoints, the fact six bombs were able to go off today, a dozen people were killed, dozens of others were
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injured is a sign of how tense things here are and that it's not just a question of militia fighters on the outskirts of baghdad but it's people, terrorists organized groups already in the capital and able to carry out actions. >> anderson cooper in baghdad, thank you. stay safe. we've just heard the latest out of iraq now to break do you know how the u.s. should proceed is ambassador richard haass, president of the council on foreign relations and author of the book "war of necessity, war of choice, a memoir of two iraq wars." richard, great to see you as always. start way report issued today by the progressive think tank. they're saying the u.s. should prepare for possible air strikes. this group center for american progress have a very close relationship with the white house. almost a revolving door of people there and working with the white house. do you think this is an indication of where the president is heading? >> look, at some point we're likely to do air strikes.
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the real question is what's the context. imagine this was just another terrorist group, talking about isis operating in some no-man's land in syria or iraq. that's the sort of thing we doll air or drone strikes or special forces missions against. we probably do that in 10, 15, 20 countries countries. the big question is whether we would do it in concert with an iranian-backed government in baghdad. that's a more complicated and more controversial issue. counter terrorist strikes, why not? >> last week on the lead," you said if you were advising president obama, you would be very careful about direct military support. obviously, that was last week. that was a lifetime ago. do you still think that? is it possible to handle the situation without direct military support? i think so. you're going to have already massive iranian support for the maliki government, so-called shia volunteers will flock to
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baghdad and the outskirts. so what you're seeing is essentially the dismantlement of iraq. i do think with iranian backing, the government which is very much in the service of iran and is very sensitive, if you will, to sectarian issues will probably survive. the kurds have gone their own way in the north. you have this no-man's land in the northwest which will be this kind of counter-terrorism zone. so i would limit at the moment, i would limit u.s. efforts to going after them as if they were a terrorist group anywhere else. >> the u.s. public has gotten a nasty lesson in the concept of blowback in the last 15 years. one of the things that we're hearing here a lot in washington, d.c. and i'm sure you're hearing a lot too at the council on foreign relations is the idea if we do not act, if the united states does not do the military strikes, the blowback could be that isis gains strength and isis fighters come to the u.s., start attacking the u.s. homeland. what's the blowback if the u.s.
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does strike? what are the risks on that side? >> well, if we do do strikes, hopefully we would do them to weaken isis in syria. that's the reason that i argued for doing strikes in syria when mr. assad didn't do things with -- didn't give up his chemical weapons. we should be arming the nonradical opposition which by the way, we give isis a flank to worry back in syria. we're going to having blowback either way, jake. what you put your finger on the fact that these guys are going to syria or iraq. this is now, if you will, the new afghanistan. this is their graduate school. we've got to assume these people are going to return to europe, elsewhere in the middle east or the united states with some skills and with even more radicalism. i think we have to gird ourselves for that. and that's probably going to happen now whether we do air strikes or drone strikes or not. >> it's been pointed out, of course, that the war in iraq
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there were no islamic militants in iraq when the war started in 2003. the kind that we're talking about now in isis. and there's no small irony to that. we've seen a lot of former bush officials talking about the controversy and the chaoses in iraq. former deputy defense secretary paul wolfowitz was on msnbc earlier saying is stopping isis was "about preventing another 9/11." i know that you believe that there is a potential terrorist threat from the isis if they succeed in taking iraq and succeed in thriving in syria. is that overstating is the case, do you think, another 9/11? >> that's a worst possible case. these guys are setting up shop in syria and parts of iraq. they're not unique, by the way. you've probably got a dozen countries in africa and the middle east where the central governments are unable or unwilling to police their own territory. we've got to the assume some of
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these individuals will get on airplanes and some of them will get through our security and police systems. that's just -- that's what life is like. but that doesn't necessarily argue for specific action. also, i think it's important to realize that what we've done is set in motion in the middle east over the years a set of policies where we help destroy existing authorities, and we've helped create vacuums where groups liking this now are able to gain traction and pose a threat. we've also created a situation say in iraq where a country like iran has a lot more influence than it did. it ought to make us very cautious in the future. we've got to play chess and not checkers in thinking through the strategic consequences of what it is we're prepared to do as bad as things are, what the middle east teaches us is the need to be careful because things can get worse.
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>> indeed. richard haass, author of "war of necessity, war of choice, a memoir of two wars." thank you so much as always. coming up, a direct hit. two massive tornadoes ripping through one town. we are on the ground in nebraska where one resident tells us she hid in a bank vault as the building crumbled around her. plus, we're getting closer to the start of cnn's exclusive town hall with hillary clinton. nothing is off-limits. that's coming right up. thank ythank you for defendiyour sacrifice. and thank you for your bravery. thank you colonel. thank you daddy. military families are uniquely thankful for many things, the legacy of usaa auto insurance can be one of them. if you're a current or former military member or their family, get an auto insurance quote and see why 92% of our members plan to stay for life.
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what about that? >> welcome back to "the lead," the sports lead. john brooks, a 20-year-old military brat born and raised in berlin who before monday technically still could have played for germany. he dreamed saturday night he would score the go-ahead goal. brook's header helped the u.s. steal three points in its opening match giving the u.s. a narrow 2-1 win over guana.
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all the american side needs to do to advance out of the group of death is steal one more point. while brooks who never lived in the u.s. should get his bar tabs up on american soil from now till eternity, demarcus beasley plans to collect on a different drink bet. beasley pulled out a challenge coin from the last time joe biden visited the team in 2010. he ribbed jurgen klinsmann told him he looked happier than when biden won re-election. now to the national lead. a single cyclone is horrifying enough in devastation it leaves in its wake. a twin tornado, that's just down right unfair. two funnel clouds descended from the nebraska skies monday, nature's horror amplified simultaneously ripping through the small town of pilger leaving two dead. the pictures from today even more gut wrenching. the town's fire station gone, 50 homes reduced to rubble, the
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entire business district splintered into strap metal. the livelihood of men and women torn down with it. george howell is in pilger. as people there try to put their lives back together, how are they doing today? it must it be awful. >> jake, you look around and you get a sense it's going to be a day by day affair. this was a big system. i've covered a lot of these but this was a big storm to hit such a small town. there is pilger, nebraska, what's left it of it. you see a lot of damage and devastation. let's get up close and personal. i didn't arrange these. you see these flivs and then pan out there, jake, if you could show the ramen noodles. clearly this was like a kitchen. you see all kinds of things that were tossed up in a big blender. town of tornadoes, eerily moved in tandem across this is nebraska farmland.
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where the small town that came between them in their path of destruction. >> one started over here and they just both headed down. >> it would be a direct hit. >> hard to remember where everything was because when you come to town, you knew where everybody lived. and all that. but now, you can't even tell where your old neighborhood was. >> i know nebraskians. we're resilient. we're going to rebuild. this town's too tough to die, right. >> the governor toured the debris field in pilger, nebraska, talked with folks and reiterating several times the town's motto, a town that's too tough to die. but nearly 60% of pilger is now wiped out. officials say one square mile of damage, two people died as the storm came through including a 5-year-old child. this woman who worked in what used to be the town's bank, took shelter in the vault. >> we were in the vault before
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the sirens went off. so we were safe. we felt we were safe. >> residents here know that rebuilding will take some time. ryan hauf is just thankful that his parents and his dog survived. >> that's about all i was concerned about for right now because that's about all i got left. >> it's a tough situation. you know, our photojournalist jake carpenter showing you this tree. the thing about it, when he these storms come through, it's amazing to see how powerful the wind is to rip the green off all these trees and leave behind the devastation you see her. within the next couple hours they're going to come together and talk about the volunteer effort to start that process of clearing through the debris, people's personal belongings and trying to get back to normal as best they can. >> george howell in pilger, thank you so much. coming up next, before she was a household name, hillary clinton was an attorney. and now a case she defended 40
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i'm jake tapper live at the newseum in washington, d.c. where in less than half a hour former secretary of state hillary clinton will talk with cnn's christiane amanpour for the first televised town hall meeting of her book tour for her auto buyography. many believe this tour is less about selling books and a potential presidential candidate. since the blitz we gan, we've seen many different sides of clinton. for those who thought they knew everything there was to know, most recently ilana goodman uncovered audio recordings of clinton from the 1980s,
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including one clip of clinton discussing a 1975 heal case in which she was the defense attorney assigned to be the defense attorney for a man charged with raping a 12-year-old girl. take a listen. he took a lie detector test. i had him take a polygraph and he passed. what was said about it was the prosecutor had evidence. among which was his underwear. so they presented the underpants with a hole in it. i said what kind of evidence is that? a pair of underpants with a hole in it. of course, the crime lab had thrown away. the piece that they had cut out, it was really odd. i plea bargained it down. >> and let's bring in senior political correspondent brianna keilar, chief congressional
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correspondent dana bash and gloria borger. in the "washington post," this is not typical talk for a lifelong defender of women and children. in the affidavit she cast the victim as emotionally unstable with a tendency to seek out older men and to engage in fantasizing. i know she was doing her job. she had to defend this client. that was -- he's entitled to the best defense possible. she's not obviously responsible for that, but do you think this is politically a problem for her in any way? >> i do. i think it's -- i think it's good lawyering but i think it is bad politics. i think it's really bad for a certain subset of voters. that would be young people. you know, i've gone to certain events and the people who are kind of coming out to see what she's about are you know, for lack of a better term, the millenial generation. they're still being introduced to her. fancy that in 2016, these are
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people who were born 1998 or slightly before, right? so you're talking about people who don't really identify with her as first lady. probably not even as senator. and they're still being introduced to her right now. she's being branded to those folks as a champion of women and girls. and so i think when you have a group of people who don't have necessarily that depth of knowledge about her and then you put something like this and i do think the audio really changes it where she's saying he took a polygraph and then she says that it forever destroyed her faith in polygraphs. she thought he was guilty. >> yes. >> i think it's a problem. i think it really pokes a hole. >> dana, clinton wrote about this in her other auto buyography saying it was shortly after this experience ann and i discussed setting up arkansas's first rape hot line. she has a track record of standing up for women and girls
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but also a tough attorney. >> a very tough attorney. brianna brought up the generational perhaps divide on this. i think we should also look at it from the perspective of the fact she was a young woman in a man's world in the south. and she was new to the area. she was assigned this case by a judge and she felt that even an objective articles she had no choice but to take it. the question then becomes, did she have a choice to go beyond that and in the affidavit what many will view as blaming the victim, going for the jugular in a way a good attorney should do to do whatever they can for their client, but when you're talking about something as incredibly sensitive and incredibly explosive as rape, especially when it's not about being a lawyer but a potician, so much of this will depend on how she frames it right now and whether she says i was young. i'm looking at my older self
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back as my younger self i wouldn't have done that. >> team clinton did not have a comment on this. >> to your point about your older self reaching out to your younger self. i understand where she was assigned being asked to take this case for legal aid. and i also think though in listening to her with her arkansas accent i might add there, it gives us a window into what she would do, how ambitious she was and how aggressive she was and also what kind of a lawyer she was and how much she wanted to win this case. she took evidence with her to new york to. >> not just evidence, it was a pair of underwear. >> the dna. >> to have the dna analyzes. this was somebody asked to take this case but a very powerful person and did her best on behalf of her client, and it gives can you a sense of what she does. you know, how when she's got her eye on something and she wants to do something, she did
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everything she could. >> quickly i want to point out, i listened to that audio several times to try to get a sense of the buzz on it is that she's laughing about it. i'm not so sure that's fair. as the a nervous laughter about how from her perspective how inept the prosecution was, the fact they were losing evidence and messing up evidence. >> i don't think there's any question she was being a tough attorney. that the doesn't necessarily jibe with the narrative. turning to another topic, the arrest today of one of the chief suspects of the benghazi attacks. i suspect that if. christiane amanpour doesn't ask her about it, which i'm sure she will, somebody in the audience will. this incident, this episode still dogs her, benghazi. >> and i do expect that she'll be asked about it. i this i it's part of like you know, she's being asked about it kind of at pre turn, too. does it change things for her? i'm not sure. the issue we're seeing in polls that it does that voters think
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her time at the state department is a plus for her. then you've got the bruise on the resume is benghazi 55% of those polled in a cnn/orc poll saying they're dissatisfied with,000 she handled it. i think as it gets discussed more and more, it kind of does become a little more of a problem. >> the question is, does she testify on benghaziing? >> before the select committee. >> before the select committee. will she do that. i think that's why there are the dras on the committee because they're au going to circle around her. i think this is a question she's got to answer. i think today's arrest helps to her a certain degree. she said look, we got this guy and we'll get to the bottom of it as she has said. that's what i'm about. her answers have been very much like the ceo. i wasn't in charge of security. and we got to play -- we got to the play major league ball and not stop getting bogged down. >> brianna keilar, dana bash, gloria, thank you so much. when we come back, they were rivals turned working
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participants. but that doesn't mean the president always took it easy on his secretary of state hillary clinton. why he warned her not to screw up twice. and will her relationship with the president be brought up in our cnn town hall? we're minutes away from the start of that event. hillary clinton live answering your questions. that's coming up. if you have moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis, like me, and you're talking to your rheumatologist about a biologic... this is humira. this is humira helping to relieve my pain. this is humira helping me lay the groundwork. this is humira helping to protect my joints from further damage. doctors have been prescribing humira for ten years. humira works by targeting and helping to block
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welcome back to the lead. we're live at the newseum in washington, d.c. where in just a few moments, cnn will begin our exclusive live town hall with hillary clinton moderated by our own christiane amanpour. there are a lot of questions to ask clinton, her record as secretary of state, fears of civil war in iraq. today's benghazi arrest. my buddy from alex has lots of question. as christiane explains, every word counts. >> it is great to be with you. >> it's been a high profile week for hillary clinton. >> i like it to double as a workout. bite two so you can do. >> some have called it the unofficial start of her unofficial campaign. >> hi.
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>> during the media blitz for "hard choices," that question, the hard choice about 2016, was artfully and repeatedly dodged. >> you know, i'm going to decide when it feels right for me to decide. >> if i ever decide to do it, i will let you all be the first to know. >> i think the voters have the right to choose whoever they want. >> hillary. hillary. >> but for a woman who many expect will run for president, every answer, every word is put under the microscope. whether it's national security. >> my chapter about syria is called "a wicked problem," and now it's gotten wickeder because of the spillover into iraq. >> or personal finances. >> we came out of the white house not only dead broke but in debt. >> critics jumped on that comment and clinton took another stab at it during another appearance with the mayor of chicago, long-time clinton supporter rahm emanuel. >> dead broke. really? >> well, that may not have been
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the most artful way of saying that you know, bill and i have gone through a lot of different phases in our lives. that was then, this is now. >> everyone tried to pry something new out of her. and clinton got a little testy when a radio host suggested that her views on gay marriage were influenced by politics. >> so that's one for you changed your mind? >> i have to say, i think you are being very persistent, but you are playing with my words and playing with what is such an important issue. >> i'm trying to clarify so you can understand. >> i think you're trying to say that i used to be opposed and now i'm in favor and i did it for political reasons. that's just flat wrong. >> but no one could argue with this. >> i've been waiting to are a grandmother for a long time. and i can't wait. i'm thrilled. >> the former secretary of state has famously flown nearly 1
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million miles to 112 countries trying to restore broken relationships with world leaders. but it's her relationship with her own leader that seems to provoke the most curiosity. >> you talked about the ideas of the republicans. i didn't talk about ronald reagan. >> the once heated opponents became working partners. >> she's an american of tremendous stature who will have my complete confidence. >> clinton says she refused the job of secretary of state several times before she eventually accepted. and she writes "shenanigans my team and the president elect were playing, made it tough to say no, shenanigans such as these from obama's future chief of staff." >> he would tell me i'm sorry, he's not available to talk to you right now. i can't put you on because i can't find him. >> in the end, clinton says she was at the white house more than 700 times during her tenure at the state department. and she recalls the president twice telling her "don't screw
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up." once in 2012 when she brokered an israeli-hamas cease fire in gaza and again that same year when clinton helped bring a chinese dissent dent to america. she calls it one of her proudest achievements. >> that was the kind of tribute to american values that you don't just turn your back on. or at least i don't. >> then came the unexpected. aboard air force one near the end of her term, the president asked her to stay on. she says she felt "the tug of my service gene, that voice telling me there is no higher calling or more noble purpose than serving your country." then she told the president no. but will that service gene win the tug of war over the presidency in 2016? >> our thanks to christiane. in just minutes, hillary clinton will take your questions.
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cnn's town hall with the former secretary of state is coming up. i'm going to make my way up there now. so stay with us. that is just minutes away.
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>> welcome back to "the lead." wow, before a live studio audience. we are live today at the newseum in washington, d.c. where in just a few minutes, former secretary of state, former senator, former first lady hillary clinton will hold a live town hall, moderated by our own christiane amanpour. the questions will be yours. i am now in the studio at the newseum where it will be taking place. one of the audience members hoping to get a question in is hannah. how you doing? what had you like to ask the former secretary of state? >> how she's going to protect aid workers in the medical community serving syrian civilians. if she was going to run for president. >> how could aid workers -- is this an issue of particular importance to you? >> yeah, i work for a syrian humanitarian relief organization, and recently a lot
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of aid workers and the medical community have been targeted by the government and various terrorist organizations. >> good for you for working. what's the name? >> syria relief and development. >> good for you. that's a wonderful question. that's a difficult one. we still have time. i could probably do another question. what about you? who are you? stand up. >> i'm sorry. >> we need special stickers. and what would you ask? >> about financial reform. it's been awhile since she was in the white house. recent supreme court cases things have changed a little in terms of how does a president make compromises when other forces are working against that. >> a smart audience. nice shoes. 190 people picked from colleges, universities, think thanks, community groups, other organizations and they're all very excited. we have a quick second for you. what would you ask? what's your name. >> tatiana. i'd also ask about syria. i want to know what she would do
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in order to engage what remains of the opposition and address the humanitarian crisis. >> two questions on syria. the hillary clinton town hall the hillary clinton town hall begins right now. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com >> tonight, a cnn town hall event, hillary clinton opens up about the hard choices she's made. and the big one around the corner. >> making a decision to run for president which i have made once is a really hard choice. >> as secretary of state, she logged nearly a million miles. stared down foreign leaders. >> russia and china been pay a price. >> and stood with the president during times of crisis. sharing successes. >> osama bin laden is dead. >> and failures. >> what happened in benghazi was a terrible tragedy. >> now, one of the most influential women in the world is standing by to answer pointed and personal questions about global threats, america's
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challenges, and her next chapter. >> i think the most important questions are not will you run or can you win. i think the important questions are, what's your vision for america and can you lead us there. this is a cnn town hall exclusive, hillary clinton's hard choices. from washington, in the studio at the newseum, here's christiane amanpour. >> we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. to a candid conversation with hillary clinton. you may have seen her do interviews lately but not like this. members of our audience will join me in asking her questions. cnn invited them from colleges and universities and civic and social groups in the washington area. we've also viewers to submit questions through tumblr. nothing is off-limits as we dig deep near her book, "hard choices," and much more. so now, please welcome the former secretary of state, hillary clinton.